How to Winterize Your Bike

At the Bike Stop Cafe & Outpost, we ride all year with exception of the occasional blizzard (and on the right bike, even that can be a blast). If you’re not yet ready to commit to riding in the winter and are planning on shelving your bike for the season, follow these tips to make sure your bike is ready to ride when the warmer weather returns.

Get a full tune-up before storing your bike

Bring your bike into the Bike Stop Cafe & Outpost for a full tune-up. After the tune-up, you can simply park your bike under cover and consider the job done. Now when the first nice day of spring comes, all you have to do is, air up the tires, check to make sure the chain didn't dry out and go out and enjoy. This way, you don't miss out on that first nice day and you avoid the early spring tuning rush.

If you don’t get a tune-up before storing your bike

Release the brake the brake and shifter cables, slide the housings out to expose more cable, and use a light cable lubricant such as ProGold on them to prevent rust.

Drip the lubricant into the housings to kill any rust so everything slides easily.

Leave the rear shifter in the highest gear and the left shifter in the lowest gear to release the pressure on the springs. This will keep the shifter springs crisp for next season.

Make sure the chain is kept freshly lubed.

Take the wheels off of the bike, air up the tires, and hang them off the ground if possible.

Wipe the whole bike down (except for brake pads, rims, grips, tires, and saddle) with WD-40. This will help keep the bike moisturized and inhibit rust.

When spring comes, reassemble everything, air up the tires, and check the tuning.

If you have a mountain bike with suspension and/or hydraulic brakes

We recommend leaving your bike right side up. Sometimes the suspension fluids will begin to seep out when components are left upside down for extended periods of time. Hydraulic brakes can also go temporarily flat when left upside down.

If you have a bike with tubeless tires

If the bike sits static for an extended amount of time, the fluid settles in the bottom of the tire and dries out, which eventually leads to the tires deflating and separating from the bead. The easiest solution is to ride the bike as often as possible through winter. If you don’t want to do that, we recommend one of these options:

Add fresh sealant, air the tires up to their max, and give the tires a spin once a week or as often as you can

Remove the tires, clean out the sealant, and store them in a dry place for the off season

Whether you decide to ride through the winter (see our tips here) or store your bike for the season, we definitely want to see you in the neighborhood. We have some fun things planned for after the holidays, so keep an eye on our website and email newsletter to learn more.


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